I loved the discussion we had at MOPS this week. It really meant something to me. Have you ever been in a situation where someone has asked you the dreaded "What do you do?" question as it relates to your job? How do you answer that?
Are you one of the ladies that dreads that question? Maybe not, maybe you have a job outside of the home. Maybe you are thrilled with what you do. I don't know, but I do know that I've answered the question with the words, "I'm just a mom," before.
I can think of the instances that I've said it, they aren't big social settings... because right now the only big social events I attend are mostly with women in the same boat as I am. The settings I've said it have been varied, but the sentiment is where the problem lies.
The problem is internal. It's all in how I look at what I do on a daily basis. Let that sink in a second.
What do I do all day? I change diapers. I make meals. I bathe kids. I discipline. I teach the alphabet, numbers, shapes, colors, and basic life skills. I negotiate between toddlers. I try to come up with engaging activities. I do laundry. I medicate sick kids. I hug. I kiss. I play. I make boo-boos better. I try to keep a semi-clean house. I meal plan. I write a blog. I run a Scentsy/Velata/Grace Adele business. I do social media for my Dad's real estate team in Texas.
Living the way I do is a privilege that I've been provided by circumstance, diligence, and hard work by myself and my sweet husband. It's not for everyone, but there are plenty out there that would do it in a heart beat if they could. Some days are extremely hard, but there is a lot of fulfillment in it too.
It's not being "just a Mom" -- it's molding who my children will become. It's my choice for my family, and while it might come with sacrifices... it also comes with choices that some families don't get to make for themselves... I could home school, or not. I can use my little bit of supplemental income to afford most extracurricular activities my kids might want to participate in.
Sometimes, I just need to remind myself that my life is much more blessed than it seems on some days. When my kids are sick and I've wiped their noses for the 9,000th time that day... I'm blessed to not have to stress about anything other than getting them better right now.
The parental warfare is so maddening -- and sometimes those of us who stay at home with our kids are made to feel less than those that are balancing a job outside of the home along with being a parent. I've done both, and they are equally challenging for different reasons. Additionally, I've yet to meet a mom that isn't trying to balance all sorts of other things outside of just being a mom... like small businesses... I look at the moms I know both via blogs and in person - almost all of them have a side business of some sort. Even if they don't. They are doing an important service to their family.
I say all of this to remind myself to never use those words. Never belittle what I do. Love every minute of it because each phase is only a short season... and it'll be over likely before I'm ready. Support other Moms in whatever they are doing... no matter how different it is from my own choice. Whether that be vaccination choices, breastfeeding, sleeping, working, dietary... we are all in this, and deserve to be supported in love no matter what.
You are never "Just a ______" -- we are all incredible women and men doing the best we can with what we are given. Don't forget that, and don't let me forget it either.